Redondo Beach woman set to stand trial for hit-and-run deaths

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Margot Julie Bronstein, 56, has been ordered to stand trial for the hit-and-run deaths of four people who were walking across the street after a Christmas concert in December. (KABC)

A Redondo Beach woman is set to stand trial for the hit-and-run deaths of four people who were crossing the street after a Christmas concert in December.

During a preliminary hearing Tuesday afternoon in a Los Angeles Superior Courtroom, police said Margot Julie Bronstein, 56, drove her car into a crowd of people leaving St. Peter's Catholic Church on Dec. 17.

She sat quietly, staring ahead as the prosecutor and her attorney tallied up those killed or injured that night.

Four people were killed, including 6-year-old Samuel Gaza and his mother. The mother and son were with a crowd of people crossing the Pacific Coast Highway after attending the church concert.

At the hearing, three witnesses said they saw Bronstein plow into the pedestrians driving at least 40 miles per hour.

One witness nearly broke down in tears and said he had just left the church with his family when he saw Bronstein hit the crowd. He said he ran out to help and hear a mother asking if her son was under the car. That's when the witness said he saw the 6-year-old pinned under a tire.

Bronstein faces four counts of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. Prosecutors allege that she was under the influence of prescription medication at the time of the incident. A pharmacist and doctor also testified at the hearing stating the pain reliever and muscle relaxer she was taking can cause drowsiness and slowed reactions.

George Leyton, of Bellflower, is a friend of Bronstein's and said the friend he knows would never hurt anyone.

After almost three hours of testimony the judge made her decision that Bronstein should stand trial.

A hearing is scheduled for Feb. 10. Bronstein remains in custody in lieu of $500,000 bail. If convicted on all counts, she faces up to 40 years in prison.


Related Topics:
hit and runchildren hit by car
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